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Credit cards

After returning from snow birding ,Nov. - Feb, I've come to find eating joints tacking on a sir charge for using a credit card to pay the bill. Gas stations have been using this for sometime, not so much in our area , but noted while on the road.
I was wandering if you're seeing the same in your area ? Both restaurant were privately owned.

Have a good weekend, Derf


  • Not really, in our area, but I've always suspected that most retail has "built-in" an extra charge, knowing that the great majority of people will be using credit. An exception is certain gas stations, such as the ARCO chain, which makes a point of charging significantly less for cash.

    Because of price increases everywhere these days, some retail may be trying to keep cost and prices down by charging a little less for cash purchases. They have to pay about 3% on every credit-card purchase, and those "3 percents" keep adding up.
  • edited March 2022
    Naw - Can’t recall encountering that before. But, merchants typically do everything within their power to apply the “debit” function rather than the credit card function to a purchase, provided your particular card functions in both respects. In fact, I stomped out af a Lowes without buying anything a couple years ago because they were demanding I supply the debit “pin number” for a small purchase rather than using the credit card feature of the same card (which doesn’t require a pin). Made little difference to me - just a matter of principal since the “debit” feature / “charge” feature both would have drawn from the same account.

    BTW - Fido sent me an offer recently for $150 cash back for applying for and using their charge card. Can’t recall the minimum purchases needed, but they weren’t great. Hell, I’d rather stick with Elan where I’ve been very happy many years.

    I do know using a charge card costs the merchant. For some local small businesses (like bicycle repair) I offer to write a check rather than pay with credit card if the merchant prefers.
  • Many merchants these days prefer credit cards to ensure they get paid. Also they pass on the 3% transaction fee to the customers. American Express charges even higher fee at 5%. Several firms I worked for want their employees to use AE.

    Some shops would provide discount if you pay in cash or personal checks. Gas at the pumps costs more now and I pay cash in order to save $0.20/ gallon. Debit cards works too but be careful at gas stations when they can be tampered easily.
  • "be careful at gas stations when they can be tampered easily."

    Yes, for sure. This is why we NEVER use debit cards, except to obtain ATM cash when traveling, and then we only use a machine at a bank or other safe location. We don't want anyone having direct access to our checking account.

    Even credit cards can be compromised at gas stations- that happened to us years ago in Canada. At least with the credit card you can deal with the situation when the statement comes each month.
  • +1 Old_Joe
  • Howdy folks,

    I have never used my debit card. I have not noticed a discount for cash, at the restaurants I frequent. That said, restaurants are still hurting badly, particularly the independents. Can you even name a bar that stays open until 2:00am? Some have given up breakfast, some dinner. All of them have reduced hours. Support your local watering hole or they won't survive. Buy as local as possible.


  • There are a growing number of merchants in my area that are going Credit Cards Only to reduce loss due to robberies.
  • edited March 2022
    I don't recall paying any credit card surcharges at local restaurants.
    Some local restaurants have implemented mandatory service charges (aka tipping) and not just for large parties.

    Like others have mentioned, it's usually a good idea to use credit cards instead of debit cards.
    Credit cards provide more protections for consumers and facilitate more effective dispute resolution.
    Several years ago I had high-yield checking accounts which required twelve monthly debit
    transactions to earn higher rates. Using debit cards regularly made me a little nervous.
  • edited April 2022
    Since we’ve expanded this to advantages of credit cards over debit …..

    Don’t take my word for it, but ISTM some credit cards provide a form of (secondary) collision insurance against accident damage on cars you rent using their card, I can only harken back to an incident in Florida more than a decade ago when my rented Ford Focus was one of 3 vehicles totaled by a large truck while waiting at a red light. (Florida’s a “no fault” state.)

    My own insurer eventually paid 100%. However, in phone discussions with my Visa rep at the time it sounded like they would provide coverage should my own insurer not. I have always stuck with that card issuer and always rent cars thru them.
  • edited April 2022
    I caught sight of a small sign behind the bar of our "Irish Rose" pub in Waikiki. "Cash is king. Credit cards incur a 3% surcharge."
    Yes, it sucks to see this sort of thing. I suppose such a thing would just lead me to reduce the tip by that much. Can't think of any other way around it.

    I was offered the option here to pay the monthly rent by credit card. Why not get the points? Ah, but the surcharge is about 3%, I'm told. They can just eat my shorts on that score.
  • @Crash : Three years ago, joint where we snowbird went that way !!!

    Paid with a check & everyone was happy !

    Gal pal closed her debit card bank account,after told she had to find a different account due to amount of cash it held & what would happen if someone hacked it.

    About 8 months ago I started checking account with Schwab & it came with debit card.
    WHY - some places will take a debit card & not a credit card. I started account with $1k
    & replenish when it gets down to a couple of hundred.

    Different strokes for different folks, Derf
  • +1. Different strokes for sure. Spring is here. And we've had showers and wind, not just "lovely, gentle trade breezes." Yikes.
  • edited April 2022
    Hold the rain, @Crash. Landing at LIH on the 12th for a two-island birthday present to myself. Class of ‘42.
  • BenWP said:

    Hold the rain, @Crash. Landing at LIH on the 12th for a two-island birthday present to myself. Class of ‘42.

    . Will do. Thumbs up!

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